Towards an Infrastructure for MLS Distributed Computing
NAVAL RESEARCH LAB WASHINGTON DC INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY DIV
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Distributed computing owes its success to the development of infrastructure, middleware, and standards e.g., CORBA by the computing industry. This community has also recognized the need to protect information and has started to develop commercial security infrastructures and standards. The US Government must protect national security information against unauthorized information flow. To support MLS distributed computing, a MLS infrastructure must be built that enables information sharing among users at different classification levels. This infrastructure should provide MLS services for protection of classified information and use both the emerging distributed computing and commercial security infrastructures. The resulting infrastructure will enable users to integrate commercial information technology products into their systems. In this paper, we examine the philosophy that has led to successful distributed computing among heterogeneous, autonomous components and propose an analogous approach for MLS distributed computing. We identify some services that are required to support MLS distributed computing, argue that these services are needed regardless of the MLS architecture used, present an approach for designing these services, and provide design guidance for a critical building block of the MLS infrastructure.
- Computer Systems